Hours after more than 19,000 people came to Churchill Downs to ring in Kentucky Derby week on Saturday, the hometown newspaper hit the doorstep with a large advertisement in the sports section that was a bit of a poke in the eye for the hometown racetrack.
The advertisement in The Courier-Journal was for Indiana Grand Race Course, the casino in Shelbyville, Ind., that benefits greatly from horses that otherwise would be running at Churchill. It also appeared again Wednesday.
Besides that, the racino’s ad is another reminder of Churchill’s many failed bids (along with the rest of Kentucky’s racetracks) to secure expanded gambling in Kentucky. The newspaper ad was sort of reminiscent of when the billboards for the Harrison County, Ind., casino started appearing alongside the Watterson Expressway’s Southern Parkway exit essentially on Churchill’s doorstep.
For now, it’s Derby week and the competition seems more remote. But in the weeks to come, it’ll serve as an ongoing poke in the eye.